Host Organisation: Norfolk Community Law Service 2022

Simardeep Kaur Bhathal

Briefly explain your most recent educational background and any work (paid or voluntary) you were doing before you began your Fellowship?

I completed my GDL in 2018 and my LPC in 2020 with the University of Law in Bloomsbury, London. I moved from London to Norwich in August 2019 and upon completion of my LPC, I started to volunteer with a local charity called Norfolk Community Law Service in the Debt Team. A few months in, a paid part-time post came up and they asked me if I was interested in applying. I came on as a paid employee in November 2021 and worked with the Debt Team until my successful application for JFF Trainee Solicitor role.

Why did you want to apply for a Justice First Fellowship?

Having already worked for NCLS, I was in contact and speaking with clients who struggle with a host of issues and cannot afford legal advice. As this was my first time working in the Charity sector, it was a culture shock for me. It was difficult listening to clients and their struggles and being helpless in my role as admin support. When this opportunity came up, I jumped to apply so that I can do more and help clients on a deeper level. Working for the DA and Family Team is just a bonus so I can champion social justice.

Complete the following sentence: ‘Outside of my legal interests, I enjoy…’

Reading, spending time with my 5-year-old daughter and cooking and baking. My husband and I enjoy spending family time together and we try and travel as much as possible with our daughter, so she sees, experiences, and understands different cultures. It is important to us because this was not really an option for us growing up as first-generation Punjabis and we want our daughter to have a different experience.

My first BA/MA was in English Literature, and I continue to enjoy reading fiction. I read every night with my daughter and hope to impart the same passion in her. I also love movie nights and eating out with my family. I took a year out of my career to work as a Chef for Gordon Ramsay and still enjoy baking and attempting to cook new dishes. I try and involve my daughter in baking as much as possible and look forward to teaching her everything I have learnt.

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